How to Wash an Electric Blanket
An electric blanket is a boon on those cold nights when crisp cotton equals cold cotton. Under blankets and over blankets are two types of electric blanket, but both can be safely washed.
Step 1 – Disconnect from the Mains Supply
Unplug your electric blanket then remove the control panel switches. Carefully examine the wires and switches to ensure they are not damaged.
Step 2 – Examine the Blanket Carefully
While the blanket is still on the bed, examine it closely to look for any signs of wear or for protruding electric wires. Check both sides.
Step 3 – Use the Bath Tub
Put several inches of warm water into the bath tub. A bath tub doesn't require that the blanket be unduly scrunched up, and allows a large area in which you can work.
Step 4 – Liquid Detergent
Pour a small quantity of liquid detergent into the bath water. Mix it well with the water and then put the blanket into the water. Allow the blanket to soak for a few minutes.
Step 5 – Knead the Blanket
Manipulate the blanket to force the water through the weave. You can achieve the same result by walking up and down on the blanket. Do this for three or four minutes. Don’t concentrate on small areas of the blanket; treat it as a single item and try to get the whole thing moving around.
Step 6 – Drain the Bath
Allow the bath to drain, keeping the blanket from sliding down to block the drain hole. Squeeze as much of the water out of the blanket as is possible.
Step 7 – Rinse
Replace the plug and re-fill the bath with warm water. Manipulate the blanket to flush the water through the weave and expel the soapy water.
Step 8 – Rinse Again
Rinse a second time and allow the blanket to drain as well as possible. This second rinse could include a fabric conditioner to add a nice smell to the blanket and make it easier to pull into shape.
Step 9 – Squeeze Excess Water Out
Press down on the blanket to squeeze out the excess water. Don't try to wring the blanket out. The twisting motion can damage the heating elements.
Step 10 – Carefully Gather the Blanket
You now have to put the blanket where it will safely dry. Gather it together and take it to a drying frame if you have one. If not, find a surface to lay it on, such as a hedge or even the lawn. The blanket can be folded over a clothes line when most of the water has dripped out of it.
The blanket is much heavier while wet, and if you don’t take care while moving it the additional weight could damage the heating elements. While laying it out to dry, pull the electric blanket carefully into shape.